Visualizing text documents as clouds or networks can reveal hidden meanings and even the occasional poetic truth. This blog post takes a look at various ways to visualize text, with plenty of links to online tools like Wordle (which I used to generate the image above) and NeoFormix.
The Matryomin is a theremin-like electronic instrument encased (for reasons unknown) in a wooden Russian doll. From the description of the Matryomin on inventor and theremin player Masami Takeuchi‘s website:
Matryomin is the unique, original erectronic musical instrument invented by Masami Takeuchi in 1999. It is a type of theremin – oldest electro-musical instrument invented in Russia – shaped Russian traditional wooden doll, Matrioshka. It hold form of Matrioshka perfectly, moreover, performing five octaves range. The distance of 1 octave at Low-Middle range is equal to Etherwavetheremin of Moog Music Inc. If you have acquired the basic technique to play theremin by Etherwavetheremin, you can enjoy playing Matryomin by same way. Matryomin is only pitch controlled theremin. Mandarin Electron, a company directed by Masami Takeuchi, started manufacturing Matryomin on a commercial basis in 2003. Now, Matryomin is going on 2nd generation model. Selled over 1,600 till now in Japan. (mandarinelectron.com)
Researchers have finally figured out (some of) what the mysterious Antikythera Mechanism does. It will be interesting to see how this plays out in The Lost Ring…
The world’s first known scientific instrument plotted the positions of celestial bodies nineteen years into the future — and as an added bonus, it kept track of upcoming Olympics.
"The maker took information about astronomical theories, and made a machine that could predict the future," said Tony Freeth, co-author of a study to be published in Nature this week. "And it would tell you, as a bit of an add-on, what Olympic games would be in progress at the time."
A dictionary-size assemblage of 37 interlocking dials crafted with the precision and complexity of a 19th century Swiss clock, the machine was recovered in 1900 from a shipwreck off the Greek island of Antikythera. Scientists dated it to 150 BC. (wired)